Intoxicated travellers charged at Sydney Airport

hand holding handcuffs

AFP officers charged two men at Sydney Airport earlier this month following separate incidents allegedly involving intoxicated disruptive behaviour.

A Beecroft man, 44, was allegedly seen drinking alcohol behind an airline desk and attempting to use the airline’s phone on 6 December 2022.

AFP officers were called to the gate and spoke to the man, who appeared to be intoxicated. During questioning, police identified he had allegedly breached his bail conditions by consuming alcohol in a public place.

He was arrested and later charged with breaching bail and handed over to NSW Police.

The second incident involved a Western Sydney man, 40, who allegedly harassed a female passenger prior to a flight from Sydney to Perth on 11 December 2022.

The Penrith man, who was allegedly intoxicated at the time, became verbally aggressive and physically assaulted an airline staff member when informed he would not be allowed to board the flight.

AFP officers arrested the man and charged him with:

  • Being drunk or disorderly at an airport, contrary to section 4bz(1)(A) of the Airports (control of On Airport Activities) Regulations 1997 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this is $444.00;
  • Stalking or intimidation with intent to cause fear of physical or mental harm, contrary to section 13(1) of the Crimes (domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is five years’ imprisonment; and
  • Common assault, contrary to section 61 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW). The maximum penalty for this offence is two years’ imprisonment.  

AFP Sydney Airport Police Commander, Detective Superintendent Morgen Blunden said there was no excuse for this type of behaviour in our airports.

“On the very day the AFP announced it was increasing patrols at Australia’s major airports to keep travellers safe over the Christmas period, my officers arrest a man for an alleged drunken disturbance. Bad behaviour at airports is not only disrespectful, it puts the safety of other people at risk,” he said.

“The AFP and our aviation partners have no tolerance for antisocial or dangerous behaviour and we will take action if people do not comply with legislation or other lawful requirements.”

From November 2021 to November 2022, the AFP responded to more than 800 aviation alcohol-related incidents at Australian designated airports, which includes Sydney, Canberra, Darwin, Cairns, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth.

Most charges related to intoxication or offensive behaviour, possessing a prohibited weapon, carrying prohibited items, public disturbance and incidents relating to assault.

The Western Sydney man is scheduled to next appear in Downing Centre Local Court on 9 Jan 2023.  

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